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News Literacy Curricula
Center for News Literacy
News Literacy is a curriculum developed at Stony Brook University in New York over the past decade. It is designed to help students develop critical thinking skills in order to judge the reliability and credibility of information, whether it comes via print, television or the Internet.
Free learning tools on media literacy and our First Amendment freedoms.
The News Literacy Project
The News Literacy Project (NLP) is a nonpartisan national education nonprofit that works with educators and journalists to teach middle school and high school students how to sort fact from fiction in the digital age.
Media Literacy Toolkit
From Newsela. Includes webinars for teachers.
A free online news literacy curriculum.
News Literacy Vocabulary
From Joyce Valenza's article, "Truth, Truthiness, Triangulation: A News Literacy Toolkit for a “Post-Truth” World"
- confirmation bias: the tendency to believe information is credible if it conforms to the reader’s/viewer’s existing belief system, or not credible if it does not conform
- container collapse: Valenza's term for our trouble discerning the original information container, format or information type–blog, book, pamphlet, government document, chapter, magazine, newspaper, journal, or section of the newspaper or magazine or journal–once publishing cues are removed and every source looks like a digital page or a printout.
- content farm or content mill: a company that employs a staff of freelance writers to create content designed to satisfy search engine retrieval algorithms with the goal of attracting views and advertising revenue.
- echo chamber: “In news media an echo chamber is a metaphorical description of a situation in which information, ideas, or beliefs are amplified or reinforced by transmission and repetition inside an “enclosed” system, where different or competing views are censored, disallowed, or otherwise underrepresented.” (Wikipedia)
- fact checking: the act of verifying assertions either prior to publication or after dissemination of the content
- filter bubble: When search tools present with the stories we are likely to click on or share based on our past activity, potentially affirming our biases, we may be experiencing what Eli Pariser calls a filter bubble,
- herding phenomenon: as more journalists begin to cover a story, even more journalists are likely to join the herd, imitating the angle the story initially took rather than developing alternate or original approaches or angles.
- native advertising: paid, sponsored content designed to look like the legitimate content produced by the media outlet
- satisficing: a portmanteau of the words satisfy and suffice introduced by Herbert Simon in 1956 to refer to the tendency of people, bounded by time limitations, to select good enough information over optimal information
- triangulation or cross verification: Researchers establish validity by using several research methods and by analyzing and examining multiple perspectives and sources in the hope that diverse viewpoints will can shed greater light on a topic.
- virality: the rapid circulation of media from one user to another. When we forward sensational stories, often from social media without checking their credibility in other sources, we increase their virality.
Books in McCulloch Library
Call Number: 070.9 KOV
Publication Date: 2010-11-09
Blur provides a road map, or more specifically, reveals the craft that has been used in newsrooms by the very best journalists for getting at the truth. In an age when the line between citizen and journalist is becoming increasingly unclear, Blur is a crucial guide for those who want to know what's true.
Losing the News by
Call Number: 071.3 JON
Publication Date: 2009-09-02
Losing the News, the penultimate title in Oxford's highly successful Annenberg Institutions of Democracy series, depicts an unsettling situation in which the American birthright of fact-based, reported news is in danger. But it is also a call to arms to fight to keep the core of news intact.
A Field Guide to Lies by
Call Number: 153.4 LEV
Publication Date: 2016-09-06
It's becoming harder to separate the wheat from the digital chaff. How do we distinguish misinformation, pseudo-facts, distortions, and outright lies from reliable information? Levitin groups his field guide into two categories--statistical infomation and faulty arguments--ultimately showing how science is the bedrock of critical thinking.
Accuracy in Media by
Call Number: 174.9 FRO
Publication Date: 2015-01-01
This book asks what exactly does it take to become a professional journalist and which ones should readers trust. It also teaches readers to spot reputable news sites and look skeptically at others for political bias or misinformation.
The News: a User's Manual by
Call Number: 302.23 DEB
Publication Date: 2014-02-11
In his dazzling new book, de Botton takes twenty-five archetypal news stories--including an airplane crash, a murder, a celebrity interview and a political scandal--and submits them to unusually intense analysis with a view to helping us navigate our news-soaked age. In The News: A User's Manual, de Botton has written the ultimate guide for our frenzied era, certain to bring calm, understanding and a measure of sanity to our daily (perhaps even hourly) interactions with the news machine.
Why the News Matters by
Call Number: 302.23 FRO
Publication Date: 2015-01-01
This book covers the essentials for students growing up in the digital age. Addressed is the importance of the news and news watchdogs in the virtual wild west of news reporting. Also covered is censorship and the importance of transparency in journalism.
The Influencing Machine by
Call Number: 302.23 GLA
Publication Date: 2012-05-07
Bursting onto the page in vivid comics by acclaimed artist Josh Neufeld, Brooke Gladstone guides us through two millennia of media history, debunking the notion that "The Media" is an external force beyond our control and equipping us to be savvy consumers and shapers of the news.
Damned Lies and Statistics by
Call Number: 303.38 BES
Publication Date: 2001-05-08
This book is a lively guide to spotting bad statistics and learning to think critically about these influential numbers. Damned Lies and Statistics is essential reading for everyone who reads or listens to the news, for students, and for anyone who relies on statistical information to understand social problems.
Evaluating Information: The Cornerstone of Civic Online Reasoning
An alarming 2016 report from the Stanford History Education Group: "By high school, we would hope that students reading about gun laws would notice that a chart came from a gun owners’ political action committee. And, in 2016, we would hope college students, who spend hours each day online, would look beyond a .org URL and ask who’s behind a site that presents only one side of a contentious issue. But in every case and at every level, we were taken aback by students’ lack of preparation."
Pew Research Center
Pew's reports on Journalism and the Media
The Poynter Institute
The Poynter Institute develops resources for journalists and writers, plus offers resources on fact checking and media literacy for the general public.
Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education
From the Association of College and Research Libraries:
Authority Is Constructed and Contextual
Information Creation as a Process
Information Has Value
Research as Inquiry
Scholarship as Conversation
Searching as Strategic Exploration
Aimed at journalists but helpful for students, this is a guide to online search and research techniques for investigation of breaking news and user-generated content.